Earl Wilson was born on August 2, 1941, in Brighton, Alabama to the late Marion Wilson and Rosie Coleman. Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, called His servant home to glory on October 6, 2020, at the age of 79. He was preceded in death by his mother and father; four brothers; Samuel Jenkins, Willie Lee Jenkins, Nathaniel Jenkins, and Lee Dale Wilson; and one sister, Essie M. Holmes.
Earl relocated to Cleveland, Ohio at age 6, where he lived with his eldest sister, Margaret. He attended Edison High School, majoring in wood shop and graduating in 1959. Upon graduation, Earl worked at several upholstery shops and later joined the U. S. Army, where he served for nine years; with tours in France, Vietnam, and Fort Eustis, Virginia. While in Vietnam, Earl was assigned as a Combat Photographer and as an Events Photographer while stationed at Fort Eustis.
Upon returning to Cleveland in 1971, Earl opened Wilson’s Upholstery and in June 1975, met Yvonna E. Stevens at his church in Cleveland, Ohio. It was love at first sight and after five months they were married and later joined Calvary Hill Missionary Baptist Church. Earl and Yvonna took great pride in their three children; Janet, Jarvis, and Michael.
Earl attended Maranatha Bible College & Institute and Temple Theological Center in Cleveland, Ohio, where he was certified as a Baptist Minister in 2008. Upon moving to Williamsburg, VA in 2012, Earl and Yvonna joined New Zion Baptist Church, where he served as an Associate Minister. In 2012, he joined the team at Bob’s Upholstery, until he faced health challenges. In 2019, Earl received a Bachelor of Biblical Studies Degree from North Carolina Theological Seminary, followed by a Level 1 Master’s Degree in Christian Ministry in 2020.
Rev. Wilson loved preaching and teaching and talking about the Lord with everyone he encountered; whether a church member, grocery store clerk, hospital worker, or a fellow bowler. When he encountered anyone, the only thing on this mind was what God said. He never missed an opportunity to “make disciples”. At New Zion, Rev. Wilson served as a Sunday School and Bible Study Teacher, Joy Ensemble Ministry Leader, and member of the bowling team. He also ministered at various area churches and visited nursing homes to encourage the sick and shut-in and always, to do a little preaching.
Earl is survived by his wife of 45 years, Yvonna; children Janet, Jarvis (Monique), and Michael (Sonya); one sister, Margaret Foster; seven grandchildren; Kasheena, Steven, Joshua, Treshawn, Jayson, Raven, and Angel; two great-grandchildren, Christopher and Dominique; and a host of nephews, nieces, cousins, his church family, and many loving and caring friends.
A memorial service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, November 23, 2020, at New Zion Baptist Church Cemetery. Due to the current health pandemic, only 25 people may be in attendance. Facial coverings and social distancing are required. Facebook Livestream will be available for this service at whitingsfuneralhome.com.
Professional services entrusted to the staff of Whiting's Funeral Home, 7005 Pocahontas Trail, Williamsburg, Virginia 23185. 757-229-3011 whitingsfuneralhome.com
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